LEXINGTON, Ohio (July 10) - If GEICO Motorcycle Honda's Dane Westby can repeat his 2012 results at this year's Buckeye SuperBike Weekend presented by Dunlop Tires, he'll be a happy man.
Westby finished first and second in the pair of GoPro Daytona SportBike races at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course a year ago, and he said he's feeling like he can be a contender again at this year's Ohio stop in the GEICO Motorcycle AMA Pro Road Racing Series.
"It's a special place for me because of the wins," Westby said. "This track may not have been our best friend in the past but when you get some good finishes like we did last year, it changes your mind."
Westby said Mid-Ohio tests a riders' ability to maintain his rhythm rather than challenging how well they can get on and off the brakes.
"I don't like the tracks that have a lot of stop-and-go," he said. "I like a track that flows and I feel like that's more of what a real racetrack is. This track is kind of old-school, which I guess makes me old-school."
He added that his powerful Honda should flourish on the 2.40-mile, 15 turn layout.
"With the way we are using the power band on this bike, it really performs better on a track that flows," Westby said. "I think we're going to have something for the competition."
Westby said he knows there are going to places where he's not a quick as other bikes, but he added that's he's been creative in the past when it comes to finding the quick line around the course.
"We might have a little disadvantage on the back straight in Ohio," Westby said. "But I know I'll be able to strike back in the corners. I've come up with some interesting passes on this track in the past, going around guys in spots they might not expect.
"I'll have no problems trying that again this weekend."
Since missing the opening event of the season with an injury, Westby has climbed into seventh in the Daytona SportBike standings and is only one point out of sixth place.
"I think there's going to be some good racing," Westby said. "The track changes a lot from practice to race time in the afternoon. You really can't exploit the track until later in the day."
Practice for the Buckeye SuperBike Weekend gets under way at 11 a.m. EDT Friday. The first Daytona SportBike qualifying session is at 2 p.m.. On Saturday, the second qualifying session rolls off at 8:50 a.m. with the first race at 1 p.m. The second race of the weekend starts at 1 p.m. CBS Sports Network will broadcast the races starting at 1:30 p.m. EDT Saturday and 2 p.m. on Sunday.